Perspectives on Post-Treatment Cancer Care Planning: Qualitative Research withSurvivors, Nurses, and Physicians Maria E. Hewitt, Senior Program Officer Institute of MedicineThe National Academies Washington DCAnnette BamundoBamundo Qualitative ResearchRebecca DayKinzey & Day Market ResearchCatherine HarveyThe Oncology GroupCorresponding author:Maria Hewitta885 Oliver StreetVictoria, British ColumbiaCanada V8S 4W5250 592-7916[email protected]This work was supported by the Lance Armstrong Foundation, the National Coalition for Cancer Survivor-ship, and the National Cancer Institute. Co-authors Annette Bamundo, Rebecca Day, and Catherine Har-vey presented these qualitative research results at an Institute of Medicine Workshop, May 15, 2006.These presentations were summarized in an IOM workshop summary published by the National Acade-mies Press.aThe analysis, opinions and assertions contained herein are those of the author and are not to be con-strued as reflecting the views or position of the National Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Medicine,or the National Research Council.
AbstractPurpose: Cancer survivors have many medical and psychosocial needs that are unad-dressed in the post-treatment period. Qualitative research was carried out to assess how a survivorship care plan created by oncologists could improve the quality of sur-vivorship care. Methods: Focus groups and interviews conducted with cancer survivors, nurses, pri-mary care physicians, and oncologists provide insights into post-treatment follow-up practices and the acceptability and feasibility of providing survivors and referring physi-cians with a cancer survivorship care plan.Results: Cancer survivors reported satisfaction with post-treatment medical care, but felt that their psychosocial needs were not met. Survivors expressed enthusiastic sup-port for receipt of a follow-up care plan. Primary care physicians viewed themselves as playing an important role during the post-treatment period and indicated that a written care plan for follow-up would help them improve their survivorship practices. Nurses recognized the need to improve the care of cancer survivors and suggested that they could play an active role in creating and implementing cancer survivorship plans. Physi-cians providing oncology care acknowledged the value of survivorship care plans, but were not inclined to complete them because such plans would not reduce other report-ing and communication requirements and would be burdensome to complete given theirbusy schedules. Conclusions: Survivorship care planning is viewed favorably by consumers, nurses and physicians, however there are several barriers to its adoption. Barriers may be overcome with: electronic medical records, changes in reporting requirements of insur-ers, advocacy on the part of patients, and incorporation of care planning in education and training programs.